Playfish co-founders take on more VC to fund learning games

An interactive education and books crossover started by some of the founders of Zynga’s main social gaming rival is taking on $4 million in venture funding.

Playfish co-founders Shukri Shammas and Sami Lababidi founded London-based Mindshapes together with David Begg, Chrisian Dorffer and Tareq Naqib in 2010 to make interactive education games for kids on multiple platforms.

Now it is taking money led by Index Ventures together with Richmond Park Partners and previous backers.

The company last took a $5 million first investment round in November 2011. It did not say why it is taking the second investment, six months later.

So far, Mindshapes has developed Magic Town, a virtual world that launched on web on May 16 and includes 70 stories from 15 children’s book publishers including Hachette, Simon & Schuster and Penguin. The service plans to launch on iOS this summer and include 200 stories by year’s end.

The outfit also wants to target elder users, with an upcoming learning game, Language City London, aimed at the 16-to-30 market.

“Users will also be able to buy access to premium chapters based on licensed entertainment brands,” according to the company.